How to compete in the “War on Talent” when Unemployment Rate is low

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How to compete in the “War on Talent” when Unemployment Rate is low

UK unemployment Rate & The War on Talent

A lack of people and a high demand for talent is not what any business wants to see; however this is happening as we speak to thousands of organisations everywhere. This is when most organisations realise that they really are only as good as their people, yet many do not invest the necessary resource that is needed in their recruitment, selection and assessment activities.

Being confident your candidates are capable

Our team has been asked by many clients to design recruitment processes which attract high-quality candidates, cost effectively and which minimise the risk of costly recruitment errors.  It is a demonstrable fact that when analysed using longitudinal validation studies, interviews alone lack recruitment reliability and validity.

By far the most effective methodology is to combine a panel interview approach with a range of objective online assessments such as Hogan or OPQ using both personality and ability tests.  This gives you an opportunity to look beyond the CV or application form to a more comprehensive understanding of the candidate’s potential and not just their past attainment.

Attracting scarce or in demand skills

Too often organisations are trying to cut recruitment costs assuming good recruitment is easy and just a commodity service.  The reality is that good recruitment will make or break your organisation. A good executive search consultant is not a recruitment agent; they do not sell you candidates.  Instead, they are highly qualified professionals who offer real advice around the role design, package to offer and they then provide an appropriate shortlist.  They are not “CV shufflers” but consulting experts.

A good executive search firm or ‘head hunter’ are able to locate candidates using every method possible so that a high quality shortlist is obtained.  They will also include any internal candidates in the process so that a benchmark may be established.

Often candidates may be located oversees so a good executive search firm will also have a global network, in our case INAC.


Using objective personality assessment such as Hogan or other established tools which may be supported by more in depth panel ability testing is vital. This may also be supported by further in depth ability testing as appropriate and best practice interviewing to ensure that the candidate chosen to fit the role is right for your organisation.

A critical activity and not an admin function

For critical hires organisations need to see recruitment as a ‘value added’ activity which can help build high performance through selective recruitment. Be aware of the “CV shufflers” and low end administrative recruiters who devalue the process.

Good selection practices are proven to help build business performance particularly when implemented in conjunction with other ‘people’ practices.

In summary

  • Use a variety of methods when vetting candidates through the selection stage
  • Benchmark candidates, throughout the search process
  • Use the right tools & people to get the shortlist that you want e.g. psychometric testing
  • Make sure you identify what skill set & personality you want to fill the role, pre selection
  • Don’t get “sold” by potential candidates, make sure they fit within your organisation and that you are happy with them


When it comes to helping you make the best recruitment or promotion decisions few organisations can match Ramsey Hall’s breath of expertise or experience.

We provide the following services:

  • Executive Search & Selection includes assessment with each short listed candidate.  Our global reach in complimented by our global network membership of INAC
  • Psychometric assessment carried out online or as part of an assessment level for all recruitment levels usually using SHL or Hogan tools and deployment decisions
  • Capability assessment and executive assessment for ‘in house’ recruitment and development decisions

If you would like any further information on any of the above why not call us on 023 8023 6944 or
020 7288 2444 or 016 1848 0048 for a chat.

Matthew Davis is a Chartered FCIPD and Chartered Marketer FCIM qualified HR/Human Capital consulting professional

Matthew Davis is a Chartered FCIPD and Chartered Marketer FCIM qualified HR/Human Capital consulting professional. Experienced in most aspects of resourcing, business psychology, performance management and organisational development consulting as well as team leadership and budgetary management.
Thanks to kevin dooley via photopin cc for the image

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